I know this is a pretty basic How To, but I couldn't find a good thread which referenced switches that will fit in the switch cluster to the left of the steering column. I wanted to run a switch to toggle my halos on and off, and so I took some pictures so I could document the process.
Estimated difficulty (1-10):
3 (Minor knowledge of electrical wiring is needed)
$15 or less
First off, you need to disconnect the battery
and remove the switch plugs. The method to remove these has already been covered by Commie in this thread
(Follow steps 1-7)
I've had a difficult time finding a switch that would "snap" into the cut out. Radio Shack's switches all required a round hole which fit a threaded base to secure the switch into place. I found a source of switches that will snap into the holes with very little modification.
The switch I used for this project is manufactured by Cole Hersee Co. and is item number 58328-100BP. This model has several color lenses to select from. Several other switches they make will also fit into the cutout.
Here is how the switch compares right out of the package in comparison to the plug.
The outer bezel needs to be slightly sanded to fit into the cut out. The plug is 0.95" x 1.54". I used 400 grit sandpaper on a flat surface and lightly sanded until the bezel was close to the plug dimensions. (The plugs fit rather loosely in the cut out, and I found if it overall dimensions of the bezel are slightly larger it will fit snuggly.)
The little tabs on the 3 corners of the hole need to be removed to form a perfect rectangle for the cutout.
I used a utility knife and a small pocket knife to cut out the tabs. (The body of the switch is slightly more narrow than the cutout. It is only necessary to make sure the top and bottom of the cutout are completely flush. Any portion of the tab still protruding will cause the switch to not fit.)
This switch is a DEPENDENT switch, meaning the light is only on when the switch is closed. You can purchase independent switches which have another connector on the back solely for the light.
The switched 12v, is the wire you are running to your accessory.
Another picture with the wires connected. The black is ground, the red with red heat shrink is the hot 12v, in this case connected to my cigarette lighter, and the red with blue heat shrink is the switched 12v, which is the relay to my halos.
There's a perfect connection for a ground right behind the driver kick-panel
[img width=576 height=768]http://i854.photobucket.com/albums/ab109/o2bsailin/Mazda3-Switch/DSC01322.jpg[/img]
Here is a close-up of the switch before the lens is installed.
The back light isn't a pure while, like traditionally seen in LEDs, this is more of an incandescent yellow color.
And the finished product. (off)
The switch does sit a little further back than the surrounding plugs so the ease of toggling the switch is slightly hindered. I'm not too worried about it because this switch will probably not see high use. The switch for the most part matches the black interior, the pictures are deceiving if you are trying to compare the color. The surface is slightly texturized which seems to fit with the theme of the dash. The best part about this install is it's complete reversible and I didn't drill holes into a plug or pay $50 for a factory switch.